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The fifth installment of the Dragon Quest series, and second in the Zenithian trilogy.

Spanning some thirty years, you guide the Silent Protagonist from childhood to adulthood as he follows his father's quest for the Legendary Hero. Along the way, he chooses which of two (or three) beautiful young women to take as his bride: His childhood friend Bianca, the sweet and sheltered Flora / Nera, or Flora/Nera's commanding sister, Debora. She then joins his travels and gives him two lovely children who prove vital to the world's future...

Notable for the addition of Mons, an element not seen in other Dragon Quest games (not the mainstream ones, at least).

It received its own loosely adapted CG movie under the name of Dragon Quest: Your Story, which came out in Japanese theaters on August 2, 2019.


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This game contains examples of:

  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • Bishop Ladja gets considerably more screentime and involvement in the plot in The Remake than in the original. To elaborate, he's the one who petrifies you and your wife instead of Kon (as a last-ditch effort before kicking the bucket). Also, instead of being killed in Talon Tower as in the original, he survives to personally execute King Korol for his failure to defeat the party and ends up being fought at the entrance to The Very Definitely Final Dungeon.
    • Party chat will also flesh out your human party members since all of them will have something to say nearly every time you talk to someone, visit somewhere, or after an event.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Not so much in the original, but in the DS version, it's hard not to feel bad for King Korol when Nimzo has Ladja execute him in an excessively brutal fashion.
  • And I Must Scream:
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    • The player character and his wife are stuck as a statue for eight years. And to make things even more horrible, you get to watch a kid grow up, and then get kidnapped. It is explicitly stated that they were aware of everything that was occurring during that time. Though, Debora in the in-game chat comments that the 10 years as a statue just flew by for her, but whether or not she was acting tough due to her personality or telling the truth is not clear.
    • Nera's dialogue makes it quite clear that she was not aware, not even knowing where she was during that span of time. This could mean that either the player-character was the only aware one because of his Loftinian blood, or that the player is only shown what's happening to them in order to set up plot-points for the next section of the game. She has more dialogue later, if you talk to the halfling who created the T'n'T board near Fairy Lea, where she says she was aware of it, so at first she might just have been so thrown off balance that she didn't know what was going on, then pulled her mind together later.
  • And Your Reward Is Parenthood: The hero must choose which of the ladies he knows will become his Heavenly Bride, at which point the two of them have children that become new party members. Their abilities are the same no matter what, but their appearance changes slightly depending on which woman is their mother.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: 3 in the original, 4 in the remakes.
    • And the number can be pushed up to 8 when you have a caravan, though you can't bring it everywhere and some enemies will prevent you from swapping members. But those in the caravan still get full experience from battles.
    • The fact that the original cut back the limit from 4 (as in the previous two games of the series) to 3, while vastly increasing the number of potential party members via the addition of Mons to the series, was quite frustrating. The only other Dragon Quest game to restrict you to 3 active party members was Dragon Quest II... which only has 3 playable characters.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Your dad is a king of a kingdom, and later on you are also crowned king. Your son and daughter are the prince/princess of said kingdom, and your wife is the Queen. While granted, you still level up as usual, Pankraz is tough as nails at the start of the game, being able to attack twice per turn and has twice as much health as his level, and by the time you are properly crowned royalty, so are you.
  • Back to the Early Installment: Early in the game (while the hero is still a child), you meet a man looking for your father. Much later in the game, you are that man, and can meet your past self through fairy magic (and attempt to warn your father about his imminent fate, but he doesn't listen).
  • Badass Family: The player-character, his wife, and their children during the endgame.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Nera speculates this is why she fell in love with the main character. If you marry her, in the party chat, a conversation after the wedding implies that destiny flat out overrode her feelings for Crispin in favor of the main character.
  • Betty and Veronica: Nera doesn't really qualify for this; instead, Bianca and Nera's DS-exclusive sister Debora fill these roles, with Nera nicely in the middle.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Uptaten Towers is a dreary, decrepit castle that the hero and Bianca visit as children. It's inhabited by the ghosts of the aristocrats who lived there. In order to rest in peace, they ask you to banish the undead, led by the Haunted Housekeeper, who've taken up residence there.
  • Black Magician Girl: Subverted. Nera has a personality type more closely associated with that of a White Magician Girl, but her stat growth and equipment selection, coupled with the fact that most of her spells are offensive in nature, lands her squarely in this role.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Ladja has the opportunity to easily kill the hero twice, and later the hero's wife along with him, the first while he's a child and doesn't know he's a threat yet, and the second when he turns the hero and his wife to stone and knows all too well, but in both cases decides to make a quick buck off the hero instead.
  • Bonus Boss: Not including the later Video Game Remakes of earlier games, this was the first Dragon Quest to have one of these, as well as an accompanying Bonus Dungeon. Estark, the original form of the final boss of Dragon Quest IV, is the boss. He would become the recurring Bonus Boss for the series.
  • Bonus Dungeon: Estark's Labyrinth is unlocked after beating the main game. Estark, one of main enemies of Dragon Quest IV, lies at the end, with the difficulty significantly ramped up. Beating him unlocks the last T'n'T board and beating that nets you the last two recruitable mons, who at this point are just for bragging rights. The real challenge is beating the Bonus Boss in under fifteen rounds, which earns the final Knick Knack for your museum. Estark's Labyrinth was the first postgame bonus dungeon in the series.
  • Boring Return Journey: After killing Grandmaster Nimzo, the heroes are immediately teleported out of Nadiria and into Zenithia. Then they are flown all around the world by the Zenithian dragon. After visiting old friends and note all evil monsters are now gone, they go back to Pankraz where they party while the credits roll.
  • Break the Haughty: Prince Harry goes through this, what with being kidnapped (thus leading to the death of the main character's father) and forced into slave labor for ten years...
  • But Thou Must!:
    • Since this is from the same series as the Trope Namer, it shouldn't be surprising that it appears at some point. In fact, during the childhood section, Harry is meta as hell about this: the first time you talk to him, he'll ask you if you want to be his goon/lackey/etc. Refuse and he'll classically But Thou Must! you. Accept, and... he tells you to scram anyway.
    • The worst one of them all is right after the first boss. He's begging for his life and forgiveness, which he doesn't deserve, seeing of course that he kept spirits from moving on for personal entertainment, and tried to have you eaten. You say no...
      Haunted housekeeper: There's no need to be like that! Surely you can forgive us, boy!
  • Can't Drop the Hero: In towns, not only is the hero always in the party, sometimes they kick out any monsters in the party as well. Played annoyingly straight in some dungeons, when you can't switch out the hero due to the wagon being left outside.
  • Cap: Annoyingly, many monsters have a level cap lower than that of the human characters (who all can reach level 99). However, the only way to find out in-game if they've hit it is to go to a Save Point and ask how far they have until their next level. Guide Dang It!!
  • Cave Behind the Falls: The entrance to Cataract Caves, as you may guess, is behind a waterfall. Inside this dungeon, the specific cave containing the Circle of Water is also behind a waterfall.
  • Caustic Critic: In the third act, a knick knack critic is spawned on the top floor of the knackatory. Put any knick knack on the stand and talk to him. Then party chat, and laugh.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: The second arc has a much darker tone than the first one.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: In the DS remake Nera, Deborah, and Rodrigo Briscoletti into this make an appearance in the very start of the game and then disappear until the midpoint of the second act.
  • Chess Motifs: The DS localization is full of these, from the titles of various bosses to Mt. Zugzwang.
  • Childhood Friend Romance:
    • The Hero has the option to marry Bianca, who he used to have adventures with.
    • Crispin Burns and Nera have loved each other since they were kids.
  • Chokepoint Geography: Nadiria is comprised of three large landmasses, linked by narrow bridges. As soon as the party set foot on the second continent, they are forced to walk down a narrow gorge so the player cannot possibly miss the town of Precaria.
  • The Chosen One: In an interesting twist for the genre, it's actually not the main character. It's his son.
  • Collection Sidequest: The PS2 and the DS versions includes Knick-knacks. Lots of Knick-knacks. Some of which can be used as equipment.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Dragon Quest: Tenkuu Monogatari is a 12 Volume manga, released in 1997, centered on Bianca and The Hero's children, named Sora (Sky) and Ten (Heaven) in this adaptation, adding a Theme Naming for the Heavenly Bride title of the original game. It serves more as an Adaptation Expansion for the children, since they venture through many original adventures not present in none of the games while their parents are Demoted to Extra. Unfortunately, Tenkuu Monogatari (Sky Tales) was not released outside Japan, and has no Fan Translation to boot.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: The story of Dragon Quest V is a 'bildungsroman' revolving around the growth of the Silent Protagonist from a newborn to a boy, from a boy to a man, and from a man to a father.
  • Competitive Balance: The heavenly brides.
    • Bianca is a Jack-of-All-Stats Magic Knight, who learns the full Frizz and Sizz families of spells.
    • Flora is a Squishy Wizard Black Mage, with less physical strength and health than Bianca, but access to the powerful Kaboom spell, which Bianca can't use. She even has Midheal for healing options.
    • Debora is a Mighty Glacier White Mage, of all things, with only one offensive spell (Kasizzle) but much higher physical stats than the other girls and more powerful weapon options.
  • Crutch Character: Some of the monsters, like the Rotten apple, start out strong, but they're hampered by: slow stat growth and an early maximum level cap. Ditto with Pankraz.
  • Curbstomp Battle: Pankraz deals this to any monsters that come in your way, including the Big Bad's goons. It's definitely warranted considering how you weak you are as a child. When he's forced to be beaten to death for the sake of your life, it takes a long time for Ladja’s minions to get his HP to zero, highlighting just how much stronger he is compared to them.
  • Cutscene Incompetence: Averted with the death of Pankraz. He doesn't get oneshotted by an attack that would normally be no problem. It plays out in the actual battle engine, with Pankraz "silently enduring" as he gets attacked repeatedly, and it takes forever for them to work through his massive HP total. It's much more epic and sadder this way, too.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max:
    • Ladja's giant instant kill fireball of DOOM. The animation used for said giant instant kill fireball is also used for the Kafrizzle spell. Considering that Kafrizzle is a really powerful single-target spell (often over 150 damage, which is a lot in this game), it could potentially be just as deadly outside of cutscenes. Also worth noting that both victims were already beaten to near death either by the party or his bodyguards.
    • Using the Magma Staff to clear the path to Diggery Pokery. You level a small mountain with it, but it does piddling damage in combat, since spells cast for free from items do half damage.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Debora at times. While talking with the critic of the Knick Knacks, party chat with your children often leads to this.
  • Death by Childbirth: Subverted. The first cutscene shows the hero's mother getting sick right after delivering her son. Then the game skips several years ahead, and she is nowhere to be seen. The player is let believe she died by childbirth until it is revealed she was kidnapped by the villains.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: All the party's potential Monster Allies are recruited by this.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: The "Harry's been kidnapped" plotline. Turns out the kidnappers are on the Order of Zugzwang's payroll.
  • Didn't See That Coming: If the player chooses to marry Debora, The Hero gets various levels of this from pretty much everyone — including Debora herself and her father.
  • Disappeared Dad: Inverted. You are the Disappeared Dad to your son and daughter, having been turned to stone along with your wife by the villains shortly after they were born. Eight years later, however, they manage to find you and turn you back to normal.
  • Disc-One Nuke:
    • The Metal King Sword you can get at the Casino in Fortuna really IS the most powerful sword in the game. And you can get as many of them as you want if you don't mind a bit of slot machine grinding. Plus, a lot of people can equip the sword, even the Slime! It's stronger than the Zenithian Blade and every casino carries a unlimited number of them. With some Save Scumming, you can get the 50K tokens needed to buy one.
    • The Slime can become one. It can equip the Metal King equipment, and learns the Kabuff and Kasap spells early on.
    • A few other monsters can become this if you luck into recruiting one, particularly the Metal Slime (of course) and the Dancing Jewel/Goodybag, the latter of which actually had decent recruitment odds. The Metal Slime doesn't really need explanation; the Goodybag, meanwhile, can be a bit hampered by the low Wisdom random AI at times, but when you have 180 Defense with gear at recruitment time, near-blanket immunity to all elements, and get Kaswoosh at your (low) level cap, who even cares?
  • Doomed Hometown: The Hero's village is burned to the ground and its people enslaved by Cuthberg after the Queen Consort frames Pankraz for Harry's kidnapping. Much later, it can get better.
  • Dub Name Change:
    • Just about every named character had a name change in the localization. You can probably count the number of unchanged names on one hand.
    • Oddly enough, this was averted in the Latin American Spanish dub, since the dub was done from the original Japanese script, rather than being done from the English dub by proxy.note 
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: The protagonist goes through a lot of hell on his way to living happily ever after.
  • Encounter Bait: Monster Munchies can be used to lure monsters in the field and distract them in battle.
  • Encounter Repellant: Holy Water and the Repel/Holy Protection spell will repel weaker monsters.
  • Endless Winter: The Winter Queen tricks Dwight into taking the Herald of Spring to the Winter Palace, causing an endless winter.
  • Engagement Challenge: Rodrigo Briscoletti demands that those who wish to marry his daughter Nera must retrieve two rings, the Circle of Fire and the Circle of Water, from Mount Magmageddon and Cataract Caves. That's exactly what the hero does, even to marry Bianca who has nothing to do with the Briscoletti family.
  • Evil Chancellor: Chancellor Jeeves of Gotha. When he finds out that you're the kingdom's missing prince and about to claim the throne, he arranges for monsters to kidnap your wife and lure you away so he can take the throne himself. He does get what's coming to him, though.
  • Express Delivery: When you arrive in Gotha, your wife is pregnant but still not showing. By the time you finish a very short side-trip mission to a nearby cave, she's ready to give birth to twins after less than 2-4 in-game days unless you dawdle.
  • First Girl Wins: Bianca, if you choose her.
  • Fourth Date Marriage: At one point in the plot, you're required to marry one of three women, two of which the hero barely knows, and the third is someone that he never had much opportunity to date (though at least he'd known her when they were children).
  • Friend or Idol Decision: A seemingly downplayed one in the wedding arc. Essentially, it appears as though if you want the Legendary Shield, you'll have to give up your Childhood Friend. Ultimately averted in that if you choose Bianca, you get the Shield anyway.
  • Friend to All Living Things: You can fill out your party with recruited monsters. How do you get them to join? Beat them up, of course.
    • The daughter plays this straight.
  • From Bad to Worse: The hero's life goes down the drain the moment his father is killed by Ladja. He becomes a slave for ten years, his wife gets kidnapped, he gets turned into a stone statue for eight years.... all because Ladja is trying to wipe the ancient hero's lineage out.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • In perhaps the oddest example of this trope and a complete inversion of the usual Take Your Time present in this game, a series of events that can take the player roughly a couple hours to get through is implied to take two YEARSnote . This happens at least twice in the game, in addition to normal story time skips. (The last era of the game is explicitly mentioned to have taken two years.)
    • A rather more disappointing example: the hero's son is the legendary hero, so you'd expect his stats would at least notably decent. They aren't. He is outclassed by his twin sister, a mage, in every category but Strength, and dwarfed in every category by his father (who is twenty years older, but come on, they're the same level!).
  • Gameplay and Story Integration:
    • On the other side of the coin, think about all the bad fortune that befalls our hero... ambushed by Ladja, watches his dad get murdered, enslaved for ten years, has to go through trials to get married, gets turned into a statue and misses the early years of his children's lives, and then has to go rescue his mother from the underworld... and then, during gameplay, when he levels up? You'll notice his luck stat just about never goes up. His luck stat is the lowest in the game.
    • In the childhood section of the game, when Pankraz is with you, you can't control your movement at all, you can't choose to initiate dialogue, you can't do anything but follow right behind him on autopilot. Well, of course you can't do anything; he's your dad, he's the party leader, not you. You're a secondary party member when he's around!
    • In one of the most meta moments in the series, Pankraz makes the mistake every player has in a 2D RPG: accidentally stepping back onto a stairs icon and ending up in the previous screen. Jarring for him as one step sent him down an entire underground stairway and hilariously awkward for you as the party member who follows without a word. This was sadly not as funny for the remake, where there is no longer a 2D icon to fumble with on the way to Coburg.
    • The game actually does lampshade the fact that resurrection can happen in this setting. So, if characters get Killed Off for Real, the narrative makes sure they're either Deader Than Dead or otherwise indisposed. Specifically, Pankraz is hit with a fireball so powerful it blasts him to ashes, and while the Hero and his wife aren't killed, they're turned into stone statues with a spell that only a specific staff can reverse. Even when you get married, instead of "as long as you both shall live," it's "as long as you both shall be resurrected from death in the church."
  • Gasshole: The ferret enemies are constantly farting, about once per second. Interestingly, while most have gas attacks, they breathe the gas, rather than using it as a form of Fartillery.
  • Generation Xerox: Harry's son not only looks exactly like his father, he plays the exact same tricks (telling Parry to fetch the lackey's badge and hiding down the stairs).
  • Gotta Catch Them All: While you can't recruit every monster in the game, you can recruit many, many more than you're likely to ever actually use. You can at least catch one palette of every monster. The Big Book of Monsters tells you what monsters can be recruited, and the chances.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: Several characters, but most notably Sancho and Bishop Ladja. Nimzo actually takes it a step further by not only talking with a Russian accent, but also using a bizarre form of Cyrillic alphabet leetspeak.
  • Have You Seen My God?: Everything starts to go wrong and the world goes to Hell after Zenithia crashes. God would step in and fix things, but gets stuck riding a minecart going in a circular route for 20 years. What's amazing is that this is almost a decade before Dogma, and it's very unlikely that Dragon Quest V could've influenced it.
  • A Hero Is Born: The story begins with the Hero's birth. And much later, Twin Heroes Are Born.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Subverted with the main character, as he's shown wielding a staff both in his sprites and in official art, foreshadowing the fact that he's NOT the Chosen Hero. However, his special weapon is the dragonstaff. He's the only one who can equip it, it's only a little weaker than the Metal King sword, and in later works, he can be seen wielding it.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: Along with naming your hero, you can rename your recruited monsters. You get to name your kids, too.
  • Heroic Mime:
    • The protagonist is silent like nearly all other Dragon Quest games. However, the game subverts this trope by later revealing that the Silent Protagonist is in fact not the supposed Legendary Hero, but that it is his rather talkative son.
    • There's also the fact that early on in the game, when you meet your future self, he's not silent. Neither is your younger self when you meet him later in the game.
    • If you take Debora to the hot springs in Stockenbarrel and use Party Chat, the Hero will 'talk'. It's just '.....', but he doesn't like the heat.
    • The Hero may also speak when he has been hit with Confusion, usually trying to talk a monster down.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight:
    • The very first fight against Bishop Ladja. He actually secretly regenerates about 200 HP per turn, which is far more than (most) characters can deal at that point in the game. Even if you manage to beat him, the game continues as if you lost. And besides, once the main character dies, the battle ends.
    • Kon starts out as this. You can only do 1 point of damage, even with the Disc-One Nuke. Just guard for three turns.
  • Hope Spot:
    • Hey, Hero! Your mother's alive and waiting to be saved! Oh wait, you just meet her and she just got Kafrizzled by Ladja... But she survived! Only to get zapped by Nimzo... Ow.
    • Hey, Hero! You just got married, got the shield that your father searched for, and just became king with two heirs! Oh...your wife has been kidnapped. You rescue her, but then you and your wife got changed into statues, and sold off. Ouch. Oh...you got bought as a gift to newborn, who you watch grow up and get kidnapped. It just keeps going...
  • Improbable Age:
    • The hero starts his adventuring career at six.
    • His children, on the other hand, wait until the ripe old age of eight.
  • Implied Love Interest: Bianca since all official depictions of Parry and Madchen (or Ten{Heaven} and Sora{Sky} in the manga adaptation) have them with blonde hair. In the game they only have blond hair if their mother is Bianca.
  • It's Personal with the Dragon: Due to the DS remake, where Bishop Ladja becomes responsible for basically everything that goes wrong in the hero's life.
  • I Will Find You: The whole plot is about finding someone. First off, Pankraz's desperately trying to find his wife. He passes on the mission to his son when he realizes he can't go on any more. After the Time Skip, The Hero, while trying to find his mom, marries a girl, But then he gets separated from his lover and children, leaving his twin offspring growing up into kid heroes trying to find their parents and then their grandma. In addition, all of the above are trying to find The Chosen One. Turns out, the reason that part took so long is that the Chosen One hadn't been born yet: he's the Hero's son.
  • Just a Stupid Accent:
    • Sancho's accent implies that his native language is Spanish, but aside from in the Spanish translation of the game (for obvious reasons), he never speaks it in full sentences. Bianca's accent dings this for some people, as well, slipping between British-English and Australian. For the record, Sancho uses Mexican Spanish in the Spanish translation.
    • Villagers of the small village called Hay speak with a very strong Cornish accent. Of course, even in the original, they had very thick rural accents.
    • Subverted in the case that you're traveling the world, and meeting many different people with many different accents. Of course you're going to run into some people you can't understand thier accents.
  • Karma Houdini: The Queen of Coburg, who orchestrates the kidnapping of her stepson and sells him as a slave to the Order of Zugzwang so her weak-willed son will take the throne and she can manipulate him. Her only punishment is being fed some humble pie and forced to be subordinate to her son and stepson.
  • Killed Off for Real:
    • Pankraz and Mada are burned to ashes so they cannot be brought back to life.
    • Also Korol, shockingly enough.
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • Instead of "as long as you both shall live", marriage vows are sworn "for so long as you both shall be resurrected from death in the church".
    • In the DS version, talk to Deborah in the third act if you married someone else. She'll say that you missed your chance with her, unless you had a switch to turn back time and confessed your love to her to a priest or something.
  • Land of Faerie: Faerie Lea is the place where faeries live. It's also a separate world from the regular one, having its own world map, and not usually accessible by humans, most of which can't see faeries. The hero visits it as a child in order to defeat the Winter Queen who's preventing the faeries from doing their job of changing the seasons. He gets to visit it again much later when he's an adult.
  • Last Girl Wins: Nera/Flora in the original, either her or Debora in the remake.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Mount Magmageddon is a volcanic dungeon the hero needs to go to in order to retrieve the Circle of Fire so he can get married. At the end of it there's a boss battle against lava monsters.
  • Licked by the Dog: The hero, by a wild sabrecat. It turns out to be his and Bianca's pet "kitty" from childhood. Ironically, the people of the town that the sabrecat was terrorizing think that it means the protagonist planned the whole thing.
  • The Lost Woods: The Neverglade is a dense, thick, labyrinthine forest surrounded by natural barriers and inhabited by fairies which hides the gate to Faerie Lea. The main character needs his children's help to navigate through the woods and find the way out.
  • Magikarp Power:
    • A few of the monsters that can hit level 99 have extremely high stat growth and/or learn incredibly powerful abilities at the highest levels. To little surprise, slimes are one of them.
    • The three brides count as well. Each one starts out filling a niche party role, but at the highest levels, their stat growths in other areas catch up and they wind up being differentiated only by what equipment they can use. For example, Debora can use stronger weapons, like the Hera Hammer.
  • Master of Illusion: Queen Ferz can cast illusions to disguise her true identity.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • The game's subtitle, Hand of the Heavenly Bride, serves as one, and not just in the fact that the marriage of the protagonist is a major element of the game. It's in that using the term of "protagonist" is more accurate than "Hero" in this instance, as he's not the Hero, nor is there some hidden twist that reveals him to be such. No, the three potential brides in question are the actual Hero descendants, and only through their marriage with him is the next Hero, his son, born.
    • Dr Agon is actually the Zenithian Dragon. With a name like that, who saw it coming?
    • The Canon Names for the hero and his children count: Madason is the son of Mada, while Parry and Madchen are derived from their grandparents Pankraz and Mada.
  • Mini-Game: Tons, especially in the DS remake. Slots, poker, the monster arena, the slurpodrome, the tombola drawings, the "Bruise the Ooze" machine in Debora's room, and especially the T'n'T boards, the last of which is monstrously complex and very aptly termed "Stark Raving". All are optional.
  • Mirror Monologue: By looking into a mirror, a character will interact with it. There's a different reaction for each character, so use Line-up under Misc. in the start menu to mess around different characters.
  • Missing Mom: When the history begins, the player character and his father have spent years searching for Mada, the protagonist's mother. Later, it is the hero's kids who spend eight years searching for their parents.
  • Modern Minstrelsy: The official English translation portrays Sancho as a dreadful Spaniard stereotype, who apparently cooks a mean paella.
  • Monster Allies: Certain monsters can be recruited, though the chance for this is rather low and you can only have up to three of a monster type. They also have level caps, making most of them Crutch Characters that are useless after a certain point, though they sometimes have useful spells.
  • Monster Protection Racket: The main character gets accused of this — he goes out to slay a beast terrorizing a farming village, only to find it's his old animal companion driven feral after he was taken into slavery for ten years. The villagers assume this is being pulled on them because they don't know the backstory, and they strongly hint that you should move on. One townsperson (a sweet, grandmotherly old woman) does realize he didn't actually do it, but still suggests he should move on as convincing the others that he's innocent will be impossible.
  • Mythology Gag: A lot of the names available for recruitable monsters are recolor names or dub names. For example "Metabble" for the Liquid Metal Slime" or "Hork" for the Walking Corpse
  • New-Age Retro Hippie: Granny Knot and others at the somewhat misnamed Knot Welcome Inne.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Herod!: Grandmaster Nimzo and Bishop Ladja try to kill the "Legendary Hero" because they believe that one of the Hero's children (preferrably the son) would grow up to be the true Chosen One. Since the children have been well-hidden by the residents of Gotha Castle, Ladja has to petrify both the Hero and his wife and wait until the child grows up. As a statue, the Hero is sold to the Porgie family, and is forced to watch as their child, Georgie, grows up... and then gets mistaken for The Chosen One and kidnapped by monsters... all the while the twins are growing up sheltered until they find their father and restore him to flesh and blood, and they would soon save the day... with help from the Hero's son, of course.
  • No Infantile Amnesia: The game starts with the main character dreaming about his own birth.
  • Obstructive Foreground: Common in certain maps and locations for the original SNES game, happens in dungeons and cities which had long invisible corridors inside of what would appear to be normal walls (A example would be the Gotha Castle, having a secret door right to the priest), the simple 2D maps will confuse players during their first stay in the area; the Nintendo DS and PS2 versions avert this by having more detailed maps and camera movement.
  • Official Couple: The main character/Bianca in the commercials for all three releases. See for yourself. [1] [2] [3] And the characters in the game nudge you like crazy to pick Bianca as your wife. The crazy thing is, the Ship Tease continues, even after you marry Nera or Debora.
  • One Size Fits All:
    • As is the norm for the Dragon Quest series and RPGs in general, but it's funny to give Bianca back the same clothes & armor that she wore as an 8 year old when you next meet her again as an adult or to swap armor with your own son.
    • Also used in-story for Zenithian helmet, which resizes itself to fit the Chosen One.
  • Permanently Missable Content: In the SNES version, you can never return to the Ice Mansion or Dwarf Cave in the Fairy Realm after Powan/Treacle uses the Flute/Beacon of Spring, so any treasures left behind are permanently missable. Averted in the PS2 and DS remakes, where you can explore the realm again after going through the Lost Forest in the third generation.
  • Perpetual Frowner: The Hero, as an adult, in the PS2 version, despite having shown all kinds of gentle expressions in official art, his 3D model for the game looks quite angry most of the time. Given his past...
  • Pet Baby, Wild Animal: Saber, the Great Sabrecat. Differs from the usual in that it's the villain who does the Shoo the Dog bit to turn him feral, but years later he recognizes his old master and rejoins him for the rest of the game.
  • Pregnant Badass: Your pregnant spouse fights alongside you and your monsters in the mountain passage on the way to Gotha.
  • Prince Charmless:
    • Prince Harry. When you first meet him, he's a six-year-old selfish prankster who only cares about himself, offering you to be his lackey (only to say you're not worthy of being one), and complains about how long you took when you and your father come to his rescue. After Pankraz's death and being enslaved by the Order of Zugzwang for ten years, he gets better.
    • His son, however, ends up being a carbon copy of his dad during the spoiled-brat phase, even going so far as to pull the same stunts on the main character's own children, though thankfully without any kidnapping occurring.
  • Proper Lady:
    • Flora/Nera is a model maiden: demure, compassionate, good with children and animals... and she is scion of an ancient aristocratic family. Unusually, for once, her type is significantly less popular among the Japanese fanbase than her romantic rival, largely due to the Guilt-Based Gaming of the original version.
    • In contrast, Debora mentions she refuses to become a "proper lady".
  • Random Encounters: In lieu with the first Dragon Quest games, Dragon Quest V for SNES was no different, the random encounter rate is just absurd, making Level Grinding absolutely unecessary for average players; the Nintendo DS and PS2 versions thankfuly toned down the encounter rate, but they were released in times where Random Encounters became a Discredited Trope, so no reason to piss off modern and old frustrated gamers.
  • Reduced-Downtime Features: This is the first game to introduce a bottomless side-inventory that can't be used in combat, a feature that persists until today.
  • Religion of Evil: The Order of Zugzwang endeavors to break the Demon Lord Nimzo out of the Dark World so he can conquer the surface world.
  • The Remake: It got two:
    • The PlayStation 2 release: complete overhaul with 3D graphics, expanded background on some characters, allowing four characters in the same party instead of just three, new monsters to fight and recruit, and the addition of a local trinkets museum where the player has to collect local specialties from all around the world, return the items back to Yuujii, and receive rewards for them.
    • The Nintendo DS release: it got all extras from the PS2 version minus the complete 3D graphics engine, but the most valuable addition was the introduction of Debora, a new possible bride for the hero.
  • The Reveal: Your son is the hero, not you.
  • Rich Bitch: Debora, who may or may not have a golden heart under all that jewelry. She spends about 90% of the marriage being an ungrateful, insane slave-driver not unlike those that imprisoned the Hero earlier, but by the time she witnesses for herself the final major tragedy in his in-game life, her tune changes and she vows to make Nimzo pay for what he did to her husband.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something:
    • Almost every important human party member is in some way connected to a royal family. This includes two kings (Pankraz and the Hero), a prince (Harry), your wife turned queen (Bianca, Nera, and Deborah), and a prince and princess (your son and daughter).
    • The story also points out the problems this can cause. While Harry is adventuring with the Hero, his country suffers greatly, and while Pankraz's brother proved himself a decent ruler in his absence, he was miserable in the role and eager to hand it over. Soon afterward, the Hero gets called out when he risks his life on another adventure — one that leads to him and his wife being Taken for Granite for several years.
  • Saintly Church: In contrast with the Order of Zugzwang, the members of the Church of the Goddess are decent people who will be delighted to help you during your adventure.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Bjorn the Behemoose is an ancient, powerful, mountain-sized demon who was sealed away long ago by the Briscoletti family.
  • Sequence Breaking: It's possible to defeat Bjorn before you've even heard of the Ultimate Key, though it requires quite a bit of Level Grinding to get decent defensive spells and lots of time and patience to bring his life down. If you do, you can access some very powerful equipment that make bosses like Korol and Ladja much easier and strong monsters that make for better grinding.
  • Shapeshifter Guilt Trip: A shapeshifting monster poses as your mother, as the High Priestess of the Church Of Evil.
  • Shoo the Dog: After killing your father and kidnapping both you and Prince Harry, Ladja lets your pet Sabercat loose to get rid of it.
  • Shout-Out:
    • King Albert and his chancellor Jeeves — aka Jeeves and Wooster.
    • Grandmaster Nimzo is named after Aron Nimzowitsch, a Latvian-born Danish unofficial grandmaster of chess. All of Nimzo's minions are named after chess pieces.
    • In one plot event, many citizens of Gotha are passed out on the floor. One of them, a nun, says the following in her sleep:
      Zzz...
      Sisterzzz are doing it for...
      Zzz...
    • The Mysterious Dr Agon has many of Ned Flanders' verbal tics.
    • In the PS2 version, the names you could pick for the saber cat include Lynx, Peach, and Zorro
    • One plot-based item is dubbed the 'Circle of Life'. When the psychic in Fortuna mentions it, she calls it "that toe-tapping number, the Cir-cle of Li-i-ife", despite it being a ring — not a song.
    • Later on, when the player actually collects the ring, the standard Get Item message box is altered slightly — instead, it says "It's the Circle of Life", a line direct from the song.
    • The ghostly Count Uptaten seems to enjoy imitating Count von Count. Of course, with a name like Count Up-To-Ten, it's probably expected.
      Count Uptaten: Easy as vun, ha ha ha, twooo, ha ha ha, zree!
    • At the beginning of the game, Pankraz will suggest naming the main character Madason. If you actually choose that as your name, he will instead suggest Erdrick.
    • King Korol. Say it out loud.
    • The Zenithians speak with Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe, just like the NPC's in the first game.
  • Shy Blue-Haired Girl: Flora/Nera. The most reserved and demure of the hero's three potential brides just so happens to be the one with blue hair.
  • Spare to the Throne: Appears twice.
    • Prince Harry's half-brother, Wilbur, never wanted to be king, but his mother orchestrates Harry's kidnapping, forcing Wilbur onto the throne so she can be Queen Dowager. When Harry returns ten years later, Wilbur is desperate to hand it over to him, and is completely stunned when Harry refuses.
    • In Gotha, Albert only rose to the throne after his elder brother disappeared; though he has done a far better job than Wilbur, he's still a Reluctant Ruler who immediately tries to hand the reins over to the just-arrived heir, despite the fact that his newly rediscovered nephew has only just learned of his Secret Legacy and has had about zero training as a ruler.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Mirudraas or Mildrath? Jami or Jahmi? The official localization offers no answers, as they went for full Dub Name Change into Nimzo and Kon.
  • Sprite/Polygon Mix: The Nintendo DS Video Game Remake combines 2D characters with 3D backgrounds.
  • Squishy Wizard:
    • Nera, the most magically skilled of the brides.
    • Madchen is also a powerful but vulnerable mage.
  • Stable Time Loop: The Hero as a kid meets up a young man in Whealbrook who is interested in seeing the Gold Orb you're carrying. Said orb was later destroyed by Ladja before the first Time Skip. You learn that the Gold Orb is needed to raise the Zenithian Castle to the skies from underwater. You then visit the Faerie Palace, travel back in time using a picture, find your younger self, and switch the decoy orb with the Gold Orb. The orb Ladja destroyed was a fake, and the young man early in Whealbrook was your older self. It's also possible to try and warn your father Pankraz about the events that will lead to his eventual death, and although he agrees to "take it to heart" he still dies nonetheless.
  • Survivor Guilt:
    • Sancho ends up with a huge case of it, although how bad it is only becomes clear if you add him to your party then talk to him a lot in different cities.
    • Harry also has this, and is much more vocal about it. However, he uses his guilt to change his outlook on life and become a better person.
  • Taken for Granite: The hero and his wife. are turned to stone by Bishop Ladja. During the Time Skip, the Hero was sold off by treasure hunters and became a lawn ornament. He's eventually restored to normal by his children and begins searching for his wife.
  • Tears of Joy: Mr. and Mrs. Porgie shed happy tears when their son George returns home after remaining kidnapped by the Order of Zugzwang for seven years. After seeing their reactions, the Hero's daughter comments sometimes people cry when they are incredibly joyous.
  • Theme Naming:
    • The official English translation of the DS remake gives several villains chess-related titles, such as Kon the Knight, Slon the Rook, and the final boss, Grandmaster Nimzo, who is named after a real-life grandmaster of chess (see Shout-Out). Allies of theirs that are just Palette Swaps of randomly encountered enemies follow the naming pattern of (name of non-Palette Swapped version) Pawn.
    • The chess motifs for the villains are even more subtle than that; the proper names are the names of the chess pieces in Russian. Kon means knight, Ferx means queen, and Korol means king. Averted, however, with Slon the Rook and Ladja the Bishop; while 'slon' means elephant in Russian (and would therefore seem like a good name for a rook), it's the Russian term for the bishop, and 'ladja' is the term for the rook.
    • Zugzwang is also a chess-related term; it means a situation in which all one's possible moves are bad.
    • Coburg and Gotha are named after this.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: In the original game, the hero's possible brides are Bianca Whitaker and Nera Briscoletti. Biana is and innkeeper's daughter, enjoys adventures and wears plain clothes. Nera is a proper noblewoman, wears elegant dresses, and speaks softly and politely.
  • Tragic Keepsake: After his father's death, the Hero finds his sword while exploring the Scary Lair. He also gets Madalena's locket after her death.
  • Tsundere: Debora, heavy on the tsun.
  • The Unchosen One: The unnamed Hero of Dragon Quest V is obviously not "The Chosen One", but the actual Prophesied Hero still looks up to him for guidance and support, because while Parry is a clever kid, he's still just a kid, and every kid needs help from his father from time to time.
  • Video Game 3D Leap: The PS2 remake, the only 2D Original Dragon Quest to be completely remade in 3D.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • Add Sancho to your party, then take him back to the first few cities of the game and talk to him constantly. How cruel you're being varies from city to city: in Roundbeck he occasionally gets depressed but also has untainted happy memories, in the ruins of Whealbrook and at Coburg your kids make it clear to you that Sancho refused to ever go to either place again until the Hero forces him to, but at least in Whealbrook after you talk to everyone he eventually seems to come to terms with what happened there. But in Coburg it's obvious that you're basically emotionally torturing him every second you stay there, because it's so hard for him to be in the place and speak with the people that he blames for Pankraz's death.
  • Video Game Time: On two different levels.
    • The passage from day to night takes a minute or two of real-world time (not counting time in battles).
    • Chapters 2 & 3 take place over less than a month of in-game day/night cycles + sleeping at inns unless you spend a lot of time grinding. However, in-story dialog suggests that each chapter takes over 2 years each. (e.g. You were rescued by your 8-year old kids, born on the day your wife was kidnapped. When you recover your wife, the game says that it's been 10 years that she was petrified.)
  • Villain with Good Publicity: The Order of Zugzwang in the third generation. You can find a catechism of their leader. Your character might even agree with the material.
  • Wolverine Claws: Debora's starting weapon are Fire Claws, as well as the Poison-inducing Cobra Claws set you can pick up later.
  • World of Pun: They're everywhere. And they're not unique to the localization, either. That's the Running Gag for the American localization of the series.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: In the Faerie Palace, the Hero goes through a portal to the past, meets his then-living father and warns him he will end up dead if he goes to Coburg. Unfortunately, Pankraz does not believe the Hero is his time-travelling grown-up son, and writes his warnings off as silly prophecies.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair:
    • Nera/Flora and her children have dark-blue hair.
    • Prince Harry and his son have neon green hair.
  • You Have Failed Me: King Korol is left to die by Nimzo after losing to the party. The Remake manages to make it even more humiliating for him.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness:
    • As if to hammer the point home that the Order of Zugzwang are evil bastards, they intend to murder all of their slaves once their citadel is completed in order to cover their tracks.
    • Also, after Chancellor Jeeves hands over your wife to Kon's goons, they promptly murder him.
    • This even happens to the head of the Order himself. After he is defeated, King Korol uses his last strength to call upon Grandmaster Nimzo to send the party to the underworld, but Nimzo ignores him and Korol dies. The remakes rub salt into the wound by not only having Nimzo ignore him, but also by having Ladja appear and tell Korol that he no longer serves any purpose before incinerating him with a fireball. Ouch.


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